Human Rights

Hong Kong urged to drop prosecutions of leading activists, not to silence peaceful protest

Independent UN human rights experts urged Hong Kong authorities on Wednesday to immediately drop the criminal prosecution of 15 pro-democracy activists who participated in peaceful protests across the Special Administrative Region of China last year.

UN officials call for release of detained Palestinian children amid pandemic

Three senior United Nations officials in the Middle East are calling for the release of Palestinian children from Israeli-run prisons and detentions centres, saying they are at particular risk of COVID-19 infection.

UN rights office concerned over migrant boat pushbacks in the Mediterranean

Restrictions against humanitarians who rescue migrant boats in the central Mediterranean are putting lives at risk and must be lifted immediately, the UN human rights office said on Friday.

Syria violence ‘a ticking time-bomb that must not be ignored’: UN human rights chief

As civilian casualties mount across Syria and human rights violations continue unabated, the UN rights chief expressed serious concern on Friday that some parties to the conflict, including ISIL terrorist fighters, may be using the COVID-19 pandemic as “an opportunity to regroup and inflict violence on the population”.  

Corruption, political blockages, threaten international efforts to help Bosnia and Herzegovina weather coronavirus

Bosnia and Herzegovina is weathering the COVID-19 outbreak better than some other nations, but there’s a real danger that corruption will undermine global efforts to help it contain the pandemic, the international community’s High Representative to the Western Balkan country told the Security Council on Wednesday.

Venezuelans ‘teetering on the brink of survival’ warn UN human rights experts

United Nations independent experts demanded on Wednesday that the Venezuelan Government take concrete actions to tackle the devastating impact on basic human rights of the country’s economic crisis.

Attacks on civilians, arbitrary arrests, top list of abuses in Libya: ICC Prosecutor

Unabated violence, particularly in and around the Libyan capital, has now been raging for more than a year, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) told the Security Council in a virtual briefing on Tuesday, warning that war crimes may have been committed.

UN rights expert urges States to step-up anti-slavery efforts to protect most vulnerable during COVID-19 

A UN human rights expert urged governments on Tuesday to increase protection for those millions of workers, who due to the COVID-19 pandemic, risk being pushed into exploitative jobs that are tantamount to slavery.
 

Sudan bans female genital mutilation, UNICEF vows to help support new law

The United Nations Childen’s Fund (UNICEF) welcomed the landmark move by Sudan’s transitional government this week to criminalize female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), with a three-year jail sentence for offenders.

‘Rights and dignity’ of older people must be respected during COVID-19 and beyond

The COVID-19 fatality rate for people over 80-years-old, is five times the global average, the UN Secretary-General said on Friday, launching a new policy initiative to address this and many other challenges faced by the elderly, during and after the biggest public health crisis to hit the world in a century.